What was your first custom?
My first action figure custom, as far as I can remember...I did a Jessica Alba in white bikini custom using the fantastic 4 Sue Storm movie figure that has, I think, 5 points of articulation if I'm correct. That time I was just practicing how to paint flesh tones and tried out the first time my newly bought epoxy putty. That custom taught me a lot in the few days I worked with it. Ended up as a crap custom but I enjoyed doing her... wait, that doesn't sound right. haha!
Which do you find more challenging to work with, your Marvel Legends scale customs or your GI Joe scaled customs?
Actually it depends on how difficult the details are. I enjoy details and it makes me appreciate customs more. They say makin' 4 inch customs are harder 'coz they are too small and very hard to work on. I agree in some aspects but it really depends on the customizer. Marvel Legends customs (6 inch) are also difficult too 'coz you gotta work on those multiple articulations, how to work on them while doing the paint job and sculpts. They must really blend without killing them. And the most important thing, I really feed on inspiration. If I am inspired that day, I can work on the tiniest or the most humongous customs I can ever think of.
If you worked for Hasbro, which line would you like to work on and which character would you want to do first?
If I get hired by Hasbro (which would only happen in my dreams), I would still love to work on the G.I.Joe 25th Anniversary line and continue working on those awesome characters with different costumes. I would put up lineups that hasn't been made yet. The first figure I would love to work on: Super articulated ZARTAN (cartoon accurate) with Mcfarlane style details on it. I would still love to work on that even though I'm not working for them. Anything's possible.
What would you say is your strongest area of customizing? Your weakest?
Hmm...tough question, man. I do not think I have a strong area, but weak area, there's tons. I haven't tried proper sculpting mediums for action figures such as apoxie sculpt so sometimes I cannot see if I'm really good at it. If anyone can sponsor me, i would make him a free custom! lol
What is the secret for painting realistic eyes?
PATIENCE and PRACTICE. If you have these two, you're ready to go. See my old tutorial on my website http://rateegcreations.x.am
What is your favorite thing about customizing?
I do not know really. When i first started, I made awful sculpts and paint jobs. "Trial and error" was my number 1 teacher. Every custom I make, I pick up a trick and bring it along to the next one until my latest customs distinctively have all of those tricks altogether. So I think my favorite thing about it is learning new stuff and always continue learning. Art is just a constant learning process and the industry learns from everything.
What is your favorite custom?
TYGRA of the Thundercats in 6 inch scale. When I worked on it, I was really inspired because that time I downloaded a few episodes from that 80's cartoons series and had the "cat boost" on me. The base figure I think is the least choice if he was done by someone else, but I modified it to the best that I could and anticipated the "what's the base figure" expected questions from people. So far those questions swarmed at me... lol
I saw somewhere that you're screen name is geetar (guitar) backwards. What kind of guitar do you play right now?
In a local forum in the Philippines where I first started last 2005, I carry the username "geetar" for some obvious reasons. I was playing in a band before and I play guitar/solos in a classic rock band. So I made a little twist when I joined international forums and spelled "geetar" backwards. That is when the username "rateeg" was born. I don't have a band right now since I moved here in Australia, but I still play. Hopefully if anyone wanna rock in the land down under, rateeg is here waitin' for you. Acoustic Blues Rules!!!
My favorite "geetars"------
Do you have any advice for the next generation of customizers drooling over your customs?
I ADVISE THEM NOT TO DROOL OVER MY CUSTOMS. lol.
But seriously, the only knowledge I can share with them is to be humble. Arrogance is sickness for me. I am sharing my talent and I wish people learn from what I do. To never be deceived by the positive comments you'll be getting on your customs, be more serious on the negative comments because those words will make you better.
You get to go on a world wide tour to show case your talents, what one GI Joe figure and one vehicle do you take with you?
Zartan in an F-22 Raptor plane in 1:18 scale. Hey, never in my life have I seen the master of disguise fly.
Please go check more of rateeg's work at his website. http://rateegcreations.8.forumer.com/index.php